Scots tennis star Sir Andy Murray has won a battle to have a wine cellar at his new multi-million pound mansion – despite admitting himself to rarely having an alcoholic drink.
The two-time Wimbledon winner had plans approved to demolish a property he bought for nearly £3 million and construct a new home in its place in Surrey.
He then went back to council chiefs to ask for approval to extend the proposed property to include a basement and rooms in the loft space.
Plans show the additional space would be used to house a basement wine cellar, a dressing room, a laundry room and a linen cupboard.
However, his new proposals attracted opposition from the local parish council who said the loft conversion was not in keeping with the area and could set a precedent for similar extensions at other properties.
The house is in Leatherhead, just a few miles from Murray’s existing £5m home in Oxshott, which he shares with wife Kim and their two young daughters.
In a letter, Headley Parish Council said: “Whilst the council accepts that the construction of a basement will not directly impact on the openness of the green belt, it believes that a visible conversion of the loft space could establish a precedent for development of loft spaces in the area.
“As a result the council objects to permission for dormer windows as requested in this application on the grounds that they are not in keeping with the style of residential properties in the area.”
But officials at Mole Valley District Council gave the plans the green light after ruling they would not be “harmful to the character of the surrounding area”.
In a report, they said: “This new proposal to create a basement and habitable space within the roof would increase the floor space of the property but not the volume of the property above ground as the height of the building would not need to be altered to convert the roof space to habitable accommodation.
“Whilst the proposal would be considered as materially larger than the dwelling it replaces, other issues need to be taken into consideration.
“The basement would be underground with no external changes and therefore there would be no impact on the openness of the green belt.
“The proposed inclusion of a basement, four dormer windows and four roof lights in the scheme for a replacement dwelling, are considered to be materially larger in numerical terms, but not harmful to the openness or visual amenities of the green belt, therefore, in this particular case, they would be acceptable.”
Murray shuns alcohol and has only ever confessed to having a few drinks to toast his Grand Slam wins at Wimbledon and the US Open.
Earlier this year, he agreed to share his new home with bats to allow building work to go ahead. He is to allow the protected species to roost in part of the loft space of the new home.
Specially designed tiles will be erected on the roof to allow the creatures access to the property after surveys of the house earmarked for demolition revealed it was home to colonies of pipistrelle and brown long-eared bats.
Murray’s representatives were forced to come up with measures to protect the bats from harm during the building project.
The double Wimbledon champion’s house plans also include separate buildings on the grounds which will house a gym and swimming pool.
He and wife Kim bought the house, which has a tennis court in its 28 acres of grounds, in November 2016.
They initially built an extension before deciding to demolish it and build their own bespoke home in its place.
Plans show the new house will be a two-storey home with five en-suite bathrooms on the first floor and a library and a study on the ground floor.
Murray was spotted back on court training this week in France as he continues his recovery from hip surgery.